Del Norte puts up 20 points in 4th for 55-46 win

The Del Norte boys basketball team has been making a habit of comeback wins.

The Warriors struggled out of the gates on Wednesday against St. Bernard's on senior night in Thunen Gym, but they were able to rally in the second half for the nine-point win.

"We didn't play very well early," said Del Norte head coach Blaine Lopez. "We kind of came out flat, we didn't have any intensity and we missed a lot of easy shots to start the game again. That has kind of been a habit for us."

Del Norte has trailed at halftime in each of their last four games. They rallied to win three of those games, and they came within two points with several chances to tie or take the lead in the closing seconds of their only loss during that stretch, against Eureka.

Once again, the Warriors turned it on after trailing 29-22 at halftime. Brandon Japp got the team rolling with an offensive rebound and putback to spark an 8-0 Warrior run.

In the fourth quarter, junior guard Steven Maready took over the game, scoring 14 of his game-high 25 points in the final period.

The lead went back and forth in the fourth quarter, changing hands seven times. The Warriors were finally able to grab the lead for good on a three-pointer by Maready that made it 46-45 with 3:19 left in the game. St. Bernard's stayed within striking distance, however, until junior Josh Gruden hit a three-pointer with 48 seconds left to put Del Norte up 52-45.

The game was the seniors' final opportunity to play in Thunen Gym. Lopez said the team is going to miss the senior group of Dylan Pease, David Sathe and Niano Santos next season.

"The seniors, especially David and Niano, they know they are not going to play very much, but they come and bust their butt every single day in practice," Lopez said. "They work hard, they are great teammates and they are the biggest cheerleaders on the bench. That is really cool. Dylan, we are obviously going to miss his leadership. He draws the toughest assignment every night guarding the other team's best player. He accepts that and takes it as a challenge. We are going to miss them for sure."

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